Water & Weather
Rescue Earth System
The Rescue Earth System is a holistic suite of diverse regenerative solutions that can be applied to all levels of society, economy and the environment.
Water & Weather Initiatives
Regenerative Restoration of the Small Water Cycle
Water and weather are connected — weather makes water (rain) and (rain) water makes weather — and both affect climate in more ways than most could imagine! Restoring the Small Water Cycle through rehydrating and restoring the ecological functions of landscapes is one of the most important solutions to weather related issues of climate change. Restoring the Small Water Cycle also increases carbon sequestration, breaking the climb in GHGs that are causing long-term climate change.
Leaky Check Dam Systems, which can easily be constructed out of local natural materials by semi-skilled volunteers, can have a big impact on water flows, infiltration and flooding downstream.
Water & Weather
The Rescue Earth Water & Weather Initiatives offer a global action plan for the restoration of the small water cycle of regions across the Globe, with a goal of decreasing floods, drought, natural disasters, and other undesirable weather related issues of climate change, and increasing the biodiversity and food production potential, through the introduction of various of rainwater retention measures that are suitable for urban and rural landscapes.
Water Action Volunteers (WAV)
The Water & Weather Initiatives listed below are the key initiatives.
Rivers are created by streams — in well hydrated landscapes there is plenty of stream water originating from groundwater which merge into larger ones to form rivers.
Weather Extremes & Heat Dynamics Explained
At some point in time, humans started to transform natural landscapes through urbanisation, deforestation and agriculture. The transformation of natural landscapes has damaged natural water cycles which leads to aridification. We are thus setting off a complete chain reaction. The destabilisation of the water cycle by degrading the soil and depleting groundwater is leading to continents warming up and resulting in increasing extreme weather events.
The sensible heat released from just 10 km2 (1 000 hectares) of dehydrated bare land (or 4 sq. mi – size of an ordinary small town) for a sunny day is comparable with the power generated by two nuclear power plants on that same day. What!? YES, and you have likely experienced this effect before — if you stand on a tarmac road or next to a concrete building during a summer day. Compare it to the refreshing feeling in a park or under a tree, even on a hot and sunny day.
Furthermore, a tree with the crown of 10 m (11 yards) diameter is capable of evaporating 400 litres (264 gallons) of water through transpiration which results in the cooling off of 150 times its volume of surrounding air by one degree Celsius! This is equivalent to 10 Air Conditioning units! The big difference is that vegetation is entirely solar powered, noiseless, cleans the air, and it binds CO2. The heat bound up in the water vapour is dissipated into the troposphere and the water vapour is eventually precipitated as rain.
The mechanism is simple. Solar radiation, when reaching the earth’s surface, will initiate evaporation of water into the troposphere. Water vapor, together with latent heat, ascends to higher and colder layers of the troposphere, where it condenses and returns to the earth’s surface in the form of rain. Latent heat is released during the condensation of water vapor and heats up the colder part of the troposphere.
This is earth’s unique air conditioning system, which takes the heat from the lower part and transports it to the upper part of the troposphere. By doing so, it maintains the heat balance on continents of planet Earth, but there needs to be a constant abundance of water on earth‘s terrestrial surface. Without water, it is not possible to transport heat from the lower part to the upper part of the troposphere.
The intensity of heat transmission from the lower to the upper part of the troposphere is reduced by the reduction of water on earth’s terrestrial surfaces. As such, heat accumulates at the bottom part of the troposphere. The intensity of heat accumulation at the bottom part of the troposphere depends on the intensity of dehydration (drainage of water) of earth’s terrestrial surface.
The logical conclusion is that more water in the ecosystems of continents implies cooling of the bottom part of the troposphere. How can we do it? Easily. It is necessary to preserve rainwater, which currently flows away from continents into oceans, and keep it where it falls. This reinforces the evaporation and outflow of heat from the lower to the upper part of the troposphere.
How much water do we need to keep on the continents? Based on research, it is about 750 cubic kilometres of water, or 100 thousand litres per inhabitant of planet Earth. In a moderately low rainfall region of our planet receives 500 mm of rain per year. In other words, 500 litres of water falls on every square metre per year — or rather astoundingly, this equates to 5 million litres per hectare!
We have around 7.5 Billion hectares of farmed and degraded land on Earth that could easily be Regeneratively Restored to infiltrate and retain an additional 100 000 litres of water per hectare. Global average rainfall is 1 000 mm per year, so on average 10 000 000 litres of eater fall on every hectare! The 100 000 liters per hectare that we need to infiltrate and retain equates to approximately 1% of the precipitation that falls on the 7.5 Billion hectares!
Especially when holistically integrated into the other initiatives of the Rescue Earth System, the Water & Weather Initiatives will go a long way to help us restore the hydrological and heat dynamics of our planet and result in many positive outcomes for communities all over the world.
Click on the Water & Weather Initiatives listed below to find out more.
- Bioremediation Systems
- Rain Garden LID Systems
- Reforestation & Trees
- Diverse Cover Crops
- Regenerative Grazing Management
- Keyline Water Management
- Infiltration Swale Systems
- Leaky Check Dam Systems
- Ecosystem Restoration
Below is a graphical explanation of the heat dynamics as discussed above.
In healthy, water saturated areas, water circulates many times in small amounts and for short distances. The majority of water that evaporates condenses again in the given region. This causes the majority of the solar energy to be consumed in evaporation, as vegetation protects the ground from overheating.
Degraded and Developed Landscapes
A common feature of urban areas is the lack of vegetation such as tree cover, and rainwater goes directly into sewage or it is channeled into rivers and subsequently into the sea. Modern agricultural practices consist of draining large swaths of land which is then subsequently artificially irrigated for growing crops. This large-scale draining and vegetation removal is connected with the release of colossal amounts of heat – and these areas are slowly transformed into heat islands.
Regeneratively Restored Landscapes
We can transform a damaged developed territory and degraded farmland into a healthy, functional ecosystem with replenished resources.